Friday, March 23, 2012

Life of a Soldier: Preserving the History of the American Civil War

Today we introduce another guest blogger. This post is written by Jared Smith. Smith is a young historian and educator in Danville, Virginia. He has a profound interest and love for all things historical since he was a small child, and he enjoys traveling and encouraging other folks to take an interest in their history. He is particularly interested in the American Civil War (he is an avid participant in reenactments of that period) and 20th century European history, with an emphasis on both World Wars and the fall of communism in Eastern Europe.

As many folks may know, the United States is currently honoring those who served in the “War Between the States” over the next few years as part of the 150th anniversary of the American Civil War. During those four years of 1861-1865, this nation was torn apart due to various political, social, and economic issues. Without getting involved with the political correctness of the war, Americans should be aware of the bravery, sacrifices, and legacy of veterans of the blue and the gray.

As Virginians, you can become aware of the legacy of veterans from both sides of the American Civil War by visiting battlefields, attending museums and lectures, and by witnessing a firsthand recreation of history through reenactments of important battles and military campaigns.

Over the next few months, I will continually update you all on the significance of the American Civil War, and the day-to-day functions in the life of a Civil War soldier. Since we are commemorating the 150th anniversary of the war, 2012 will be a fun and exciting starting point to immerse yourself in Civil War history. For example, there are many key battle reenactment events being held this year such Shiloh (Tennessee), Second Manassas/Bull Run (Virginia), Antietam/Sharpsburg (Maryland) and Fredericksburg (Virginia). I will post updates on each major event in the near future.

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